Welcome to the May edition of the Userfocus usability and user experience newsletter!
- Message from the Editor
- Feature article: Eric Morecambe's lesson for user experience teams
- What we're reading
- Upcoming training courses
- User experience quotation of the month
Ah, May. Bees, blossom… and garden power tools.
What is it with power tools? Mowing my garden is like dragging a dead body around the grass. And starting these devices is like nursing an antique motorcycle to life: it can take so many pulls of the starter cord I'll often feel exhausted before I begin. My car has a button that I press and the engine comes to life. Are garden power tools really that much more complex?
When I spoke to a friend about this, he mentioned that the difficulty in using these tools is part of the experience. It shows you're serious: they're not meant for casual gardeners like me. I think this is a bit like arguing that serious photographers should carry around a wet plate camera and their own darkroom when they go on holiday.
I think there's a niche for power tools for the weedy and clueless. Anyone fancy creating a Kickstarter?
On a different note, this month I've written an article about a comedian's wise words for design teams. I hope you find it useful.
Over 40 years ago, comedy duo Morecambe and Wise filmed a now legendary sketch for a television Christmas special. Scratch below the surface of this sketch and you'll discover an important lesson for user experience teams. Read the article in full: Eric Morecambe's lesson for user experience teams.
Some interesting usability-related articles that got our attention over the last month:
- "In the transition to flat design we lost some of the helpful affordances that make products easy to use."
- IBM to invest $100m in UX consulting, hire 1,000 employees across 10 Interactive Experience Labs worldwide.
- Dear Product Manager: 4 things your UX expert wants you to know.
- The 25 Worst Websites of 2013.
- Designing without drop-down menus.
- Get Started in UX: Assess your UX skills.
- Nest's smoke alarm stumble is a UI lesson for everybody.
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Web Usability: An Introduction to User Experience, August 11-12, London.
A fast-paced, 2-day immersion seminar that shows delegates how to boost sales and conversion rates, increase usage and improve customer satisfaction. More information about this training course: Web Usability: An Introduction to User Experience.
“Everything has been said before, but since nobody listens we have to keep going back and beginning all over again.” — André Gide.